Nov 05, 2018

Valley of Fire

This past Saturday, November 2nd, we made the just over an hour drive to the Valley of Fire State Park.  It was time to visit the location we have heard so much about and to try out my new trekking poles.  We had no idea that it was to be a such along day.  We were gone a full nine hours.  The first thing we did was check out the RV campground as we planned on coming back and stay in the state park.  We later found out that you can’t make a reservation, it is first come, first serve which is alright if you are a smaller RV.  There are fewer sites that we could fit into so we won’t be staying there.  We will just have to make day trips.

The park is amazing.  After a quick stop at the impressive visitor center we headed directly to what the ranger referred to as the most difficult hike of the two we asked about.

We were starting with the Fire Wave. It was early in the morning and with a light breeze it was perfect timing.   This is the desert area and there are signs all over saying that today the heat danger was low.

It would later reach 23C/74F with no shade.  I love the poles.  It did not take long to get used to them.

I certainly relied on them for balance and support.

I would have been unable to do this without the poles.

I would have been unable to walk along here without the poles.


The photos speak for themselves.

A small natural arch.

I will admit that my hands did get sore, perhaps because I was gripping the poles too hard.   However I felt that I needed to as the terrain was a lot of up and down and not smooth with large boulders to go around along the trail.  There also was a lot of walking in sand at the beginning and of course the  end, which I found tiring.   I was tired by the time we got to the car but I was game to get to the next hike.

By now the sun was overhead and we could feel the heat, especially standing in this white sand at the beginning of the White Domes Trail.  The heat reflecting off the sand made it feel very hot plus the breeze was gone.  The sand was deep enough in areas that it came over the top of my shoes and even between my socks and my feet.  I am holding the pole on the left up with no weight.  The pole on the right has my weight on it.  That little tip on the end is called a mud basket and it is to prevent you from sinking.  It works even though I had them on upside down:)

Getting through the 1/4 of a mile in this deep sand in the heat was grueling.

Colin went ahead as he was worried about me.   At the end of the sand was a straight decent and then many large boulders as the trail continued down.  What goes down must come up and that put an end to the White Domes hike for this day.  We had to slog back uphill through the sand and that really was enough for me.  Next time it will be an early morning hike when I am fresh.

So many places where you are able to stop and take photos along the road. We also did the Fire Canyon Road.

Rainbow Vista was a nice stroll, again in the sand but not so deep as at White Domes.  The sand is red along here.

Finally, a selfie.

Our next stop was at Mouse’s Tank, so named for an outlaw who used the area as a hideout in the 1890’s.  Mouse’s Tank is a natural basin in the rock where water collects after rainfalls.  We did see water in the tank.  The trail is not too bad but has a few high steps up and then down.  I did need Colin to steady me twice further along.

Along the trail are numerous prehistoric petroglyphs.  However it is up to you to stop and spot them.  We saw several people just dashing along and not taking the time to stop and look up and around.

Some where more complex than others.

Perhaps done at a later time than these were.

The short 1/4 mile hike to see Elephant Rock was straight up.  Again I fully relied on my poles.

We had read that the best way to see Elephant Rock was to climb up and around back of the rock.  Colin did so.  Can you see the elephant now?  That is me down there under his trunk.

Can you see Colin in the photo?

He climbed down and helped me descend the trail back to the car.  It was time to indulge in some snacks as we drove back to the RV.  I did have a protein bar earlier.  What a long but lovely day.  We both want to come back and do more exploring in the Valley of Fire State Park.  Hopefully by then I will be in better shape to try out other trails.   After a glass or two of wine I felt just fine.  I had no pain the next day although my arms were tight in a few areas.

Once again another lovely sunset.

I ended up walking 5.76 miles and was in bed by 9:30PM 😯







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12 responses so far

12 Responses to “Valley of Fire”

  1. Marie says:

    I like Colin’s shirt!!!

  2. Dee Tillotson says:

    Sea to Summit hiking gloves: Can be found on Amazon for around $28.00US. They only cover from the wrists to the knuckles of the hands. You’re doing some “serious” hiking now. If you need the gloves right away, Merrills in Tanger Outlets will probably have them because Merrills is a store dedicated to serious hikers.

    You Go Girl!! The colors and photos are wonderful.

  3. Maxx Trails says:

    We loved our time at Valley of Fire! So glad that you were able to visit it.

  4. George Yates says:

    What a wonderful hike and a good workout nice that you could enjoy it even more.

  5. Cindy says:

    wow thanks for the pics! Love Valley of Fire…its on my list to go back again too! Good job!

  6. Alan Brechin says:

    Glad you spent the time to go to the Valley of Fire. We loved our stay there and those poles really seem to be working for you. Go for it!!!

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